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LETTERS / Nobody Rises to Power Calling Himself a Tyrant

Dear Editor,

“We are fast approaching the stage of the ultimate inversion where Government is free to do anything it pleases, while the citizens may act only by permission.” Ayn rand

Former NSA contractor Snowden was interviewed by German TV recently, but American viewers couldn’t see it because no major news outlets covered it and the video quickly vanishes whenever it’s posted on YouTube.

This interview was a major event in print and broadcast media across much of the world. Snowden says in the interview that his “breaking point” was “seeing Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, lie under oath to Congress” denying the existence of a domestic spying programs. Snowden continues, “The public had a right to know about these programs. The public had a right to know that which the government is doing in its name, and that which the government is doing against the public.”

Snowden said; “If I am traitor, who did I betray? I gave all my information to the American public, to American journalists who are reporting on American issues. If they see that as treason, I think people really need to consider who they think they’re working for. The public is supposed to be their boss, not their enemy.”

Censoring this interview continues efforts to hide reality from Americans. “Our free press”, America’s Pravda, sells government lies about domestic surveillance programs, justifying them as necessary to fight the “War on Terror”, while painting Snowden as a traitor. Change a few nouns and the public presentation of American government actions are carbon copies of our school lessons about Soviet activities in the fifties/sixties.

One account from the Snowden documents describes how American intelligence agencies manipulate and control online discussion using deception and reputation-destruction. Our nation is a developing police state, with no expectation of privacy, even of our private parts in public airports. We’re commanded to trust “our government’s” everlasting benevolence by president Fancy-words.

Nobody rises to power calling himself a tyrant. Every tyrannical regime sold itself as patriotic and compassionate; people supporting such regimes also consider themselves patriotic and compassionate. The police state is never called that by its sponsors; they call it “law and order,” “keeping the peace,” “protecting the homeland” or “spreading freedom”.

After Snowden’s revelations appeared Obama said he welcomed the debate on the NSA’s programs which only happened because Snowden exposed the program, limiting his own freedom. “Mr. Snowden has been accused of leaking classified information and he faces felony charges here” wined press secretary Carney. “He should be returned as soon as possible, where he will be accorded full due process in our system.”

“Our government” gives no evidence NSA’s surveillance stopped any attack, eased any time-sensitive objective or the leaks helped any enemy. Abuse power and those with power will protect you; embarrass/expose them, and you’re on your own. In America the architects of the banking crisis dine at the White House and those powerful few ever brought to “justice” never admit any bad behavior, or get labeled “felons.”

Some Americans prefer delusion in the face of evidence to the contrary and believe what the TV talking heads tell them. Doublespeak/hypocrisy is the usual way of doing business in America and everyday, should you choose, you can find it used to influence public opinion for the benefit of “our leaders”. We’re taught about “our free press” but ignore their virtual lockstep reinforcement of official actions. Its not what the founders intended and continues because you support it.

Countries where popular elections create governments that aren’t approved by America, suddenly find their chosen government removed, overturning the voters, to “spread democracy/freedom”. Corporate media “coverage” of the coup in Kiev was filled with hypocrisy. When similar protests and riots break out in “western democracies”, “our free press” wines about anti-government minorities and the demonstrations then become issues of law and order.

Americans have a special ability to misjudge the obvious. Ukraine, now one of the poorest countries in Europe, is wide open for further looting thanks to a kleptocracy supported by “our government”. This was revealed when state department official, Victoria Nuland spoke about five billion dollars America gave to the groups to create this “revolution”.

Secretary of state Kerry said Russia shouldn’t invade other countries on trumped up charges. The punchline could begin with Grenada and Panama. Imagine the result if protesters, supported by Russia, camped in Washington, threw Molotov cocktails into government buildings, shot at the police, and demanded that “our government” resign.

Where are statements of concern about the rights and safety of protesters from “our government” when force is used on American peaceful demonstrators? Rioting to oust a “democratically-elected” government is something America wouldn’t accept at home. If several people meet to talk about removing the American government they usually find themselves in prison.

America regularly tells governments being challenged not to use violence against their citizens ignoring such violence by our friends. The occupy wall street protest against the bankers destruction of average Americans lives, and “our corrupt government”, saw police almost everywhere using deliberate violence, often quite brutal, to drive protesters from public spaces. We saw random spraying of mace into faces, widespread use of billyclubs, other assorted police violence against citizens, and mass arrests.

Look beyond the noble phrases. The language of freedom anywhere is irrelevant if the power, wealth and opportunity live in the hands of just a few. By any measure, once free America is advancing towards dictatorship, while wrapping itself in the flag and empty words 

A 2011 Rasmussen poll found that 17 per cent of Americans believe “our government” has the consent of the governed. Who will save us but ourselves? It’s better to stand and fight. If you run you’ll only die tired.

“Journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed: everything else is public relations.” George Orwell

Craig Dudley